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读书的趣味

当发现自己的小乐趣成为大众的狂欢,总会有些失落。同时也终于明白,自己的所见所闻喜怒哀乐也都是前/别人所熟知体察甚至反复咀嚼过的。更令我沮丧的是,这些对我来说还是隐隐约约不可捉摸难以描述的情绪或是经验早就被升华为一种理论和体系且不怕时间的敲打。就好比小时候知道爱迪生有好多发明后,我明白一鸣惊人的可能性已化作一片亘古的荒漠,全部的努力,不过是完成普通的生活。 就连这么个痛苦的感怀,也都被提炼出来了。

Things which everyone can join in usually aren’t worth doing.

在blog也写过大上海在我小时候不过就是一个一个小村庄所组成的,村民知根知底。对这一个敏锐发现还沾沾自喜过,其实早在我出生之前这就给定义出来了。

London, as you very well know, is a collection of villages, socially and occupationally as well as geographically.

In a village, no matter what village, they were all immutably themselves, parson, organist, sweep, duke’s son and doctor’s daughter, moving like chessmen upon their allotted squares.

而现在的上海大概是这样的:In London anybody at any moment might do or become anything.

幸好,这个世界比我小时候要开阔,还有酸甜苦辣以外的味道可以去品尝,对我来说它们是新鲜的,仿佛是前人从未经临的园地。

譬如,Talking about Detective Fiction

作者说Most fiction is autobiographical and some autobiography partly fiction.

写书的另一个优势是可以所心所欲,在虚拟世界中得到满足。即便是Sayers,第一个拿到牛津学位的女性也无法免俗。

Lord Peter’s large income was a different matter. I deliberately gave him that. After all, it cost me nothing, and at that time I was particularly hard up and it gave me pleasure to spend his fortune for him. When I was dissatisfied with my single unfurnished room, I took a luxurious flat for him in Piccadilly. When my cheap rug got a hole in it, I ordered an Aubusson carpet. When I had no money to pay my bus fare, I presented him with a Daimler double-six, upholstered in a style of sober magnificence, and when I felt dull I let him drive it.

写侦探书似乎并不难,因为All motives can be explained under the letter L: lust, lucre, loathing and love. They will tell you the most dangerous is loathing but don’t you believe it; the most dangerous is love.

然而这个门类能生生不息的一个原因可能是:The typical reader of detective stories is a person who suffers from a sense of sin. The fantasy which the mystery provides is one of escape to a prelapsarian state of innocence and the driving force behind the daydream is the discomfort of an unrecognised guilt. //有意识地觉知,并为它命名,想来也是让生命丰厚的一个过程。

另外的一个原因是:Our planet has always been a dangerous, violent and mysterious habitation for humankind and we all are adept at creating those pleasures and comforts, large and small, sometimes dangerous and destructive, which offer at least temporary relief from the inevitable tensions and anxieties of contemporary life.

最回味的部分是 :As I was born in 1920 it was an England I knew, a cohesive world, overwhelmingly white and united by a common belief in a religious and moral code based on the Judeo-Christian inheritance – even if this belief was not invariably reflected in practice – and buttressed by social and political institutions which, although they might be criticised, attracted general allegiance, and were accepted as necessary to the well-being of the state. It was an ordered society in which virtue was regarded as normal, crime an aberration, and in which there was small sympathy for the criminal. And the writers had been bred to a standard of ethics and manners in public and private life which today might well be seen as elitist.

He yet carried about with him that permanent atmosphere of security. He belonged to an ordered society and this was it. More than any of the friends in her own world he spoke the familiar language of her childhood.

小时候也就是看着大人们寒来暑往,养儿育女,生老病死。那么多年,他们并不知道礼数或教养那些文雅的词汇,礼数或教养落在他们身上就是日常的油盐酱醋平常的待人接物。不料,这些基本的文明规范到了今天竟然成了奢侈品,我在读那些微博如“虎区下车,车厢上占座睡觉,超市未付钱先喝水,小车后座系保险带被喷……”,常觉得夏虫语冰,读了上文后才了解背后的原因。

阿婆的书则是停留在往事中,不愿意把现实掺和进去。In the Agatha Christie novels the changes in contemporary life are mostly shown by the inconveniences suffered by the characters in obtaining servants, good service from tradesmen or maintaining their houses.

一尘不变带来了秩序和安全感,但是若没有希望也教压在社会底层的人失望。

Today the gap is between those who have wealth and celebrity – whether achieved through natural talent or, more commonly, as artifacts of the media – and those who have not. It is ostentatious wealth that bestows distinction and privilege. Although this new division has its disagreeable aspect, perhaps it is a fairer system since everyone can hope, however unreasonable, to win the lottery and move into the charmed circle of unlimited consumption and media attention, whereas distinction by breeding is immutable fixed at birth and intellectual ability in all classes largely the result of inherited intelligence which in the more fortunate can be fostered by good education. Snobbery is always with us; it merely embodies different prejudices and is directed at different victims.

然而希望其实就像肥皂泡。

In detective fiction the successful middle-class character is more often than not the murderer, and some would say with much less excuse than have the unfortunate and deprived.

Your red herring. My Load

Your red herring. My Load

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